What are comments?
Comments are temporary "Post-It" notes left on a question or answer. They can be up-voted (but not down-voted) and flagged, but do not generate reputation. There's no revision history, and when they are deleted they're gone for good.
Please note that you can always comment on your own posts, and any part of your questions. However, commenting on other people's posts is a privilege.
How do I comment?
add a comment link under each post. Comments cannot be multi-line, so simply press enter to submit your comment.
Note that comments support a small subset of Markdown, so you can do things like
What happens when I comment?
The following community members will be automatically notified of your comment:
- the owner of the post you're commenting on
- one additional user when your comment contains a @username1 reply
1 You can only @reply to users who have already left a comment, or edited the post. The first three non-whitespace characters in @username are used for name matching, starting from the most recent comment or edit. See How do comment replies work?
When should I comment?
You should submit a comment if you want to:
- Request clarification from the author;
- Leave constructive criticism that guides the author in improving the post;
- Add relevant but minor or transient information to a post (e.g. a link to a related question, or an alert to the author that the question has been updated).
When shouldn't I comment?
Comments are not recommended for any of the following:
Answering a question or providing an alternate solution to an existing answer; instead, post an actual answer (or edit to expand an existing one);
Compliments which do not add new information ("+1, great answer!"); instead, up-vote it and pay it forward;
Criticisms which do not add anything constructive ("-1, see previous comments you scallywag!"); instead, down-vote (and provide or up-vote a better answer if appropriate);
Secondary discussion or debating a controversial point; please use chat instead;
Discussion of community behavior or site policies; please use meta instead.
What else should I know?
Please note that the comment privilege is also linked to the flagging privilege. In the flag-to-close menu, the options to flag as duplicate or as off-topic will not appear if you do not have sufficient reputation to post a comment because these flag types automatically generate a comment when you submit the flag.